Skip to main content

A unique insight into the Welsh Settlement in Patagonia

22 June 2015

This year, the Welsh Settlement in Patagonia is celebrating a major milestone in its history, the 150th anniversary of its establishment in 1865. To mark this significant event Cardiff University's School of Welsh will hold an international conference on the history and the contemporary position of the Settlement on Monday, 6 July and Tuesday, 7 July 2015. This will be held in the John Percival Building on the University campus.

The conference will consist of two days of papers and discussions across a broad range of topics relating to the Welsh experience in Patagonia, including the linguistic, literary, educational, geographical and social context.

This will be a unique opportunity to view the Settlement, past, present and future, through the eyes of people from Wales and from Patagonia, with almost half of the conference speakers born and raised in Argentina.

The Centre for Welsh American Studies (part of the School of Welsh) is organising the conference, in partnership with the Wales-Argentina Society and the Culture of the 18th and 19th Centuries and the Ethnology and Folk Studies Sections of the University of Wales Alumni Association. The event is also generously supported by Santander Universities.

Professor E. Wyn James, from the Centre for Welsh American Studies, said: "The establishment of the Welsh Settlement in Patagonia was a heroic undertaking of national and international significance. Its history and development pose many interesting and relevant questions about migration and identity. This is the first time so many Welsh and Argentine experts have come together to discuss the Settlement. As such, there is every indication that this conference will be a major milestone in the history of studying the Welsh in Patagonia."

It is fitting that the conference is being organised by Cardiff University's School of Welsh as the School has strong links with the Settlement, forged over many years. The School offers a module on 'The Identity and Culture of the Welsh Settlement in Patagonia' for undergraduate students, and scholarships are available annually for some of them go to the Settlement for a period of work experience. Staff members lecture and publish regularly on different aspects of the language and culture of the Settlement, and the School's Welsh for Adults Centre is a key partner in the Welsh Language Scheme in Chubut.

There is no fee for attending the conference but please register in advance using the form below.

For further information please contact Professor E. Wyn James, School of Welsh, Cardiff University, John Percival Building, Colum Road, Cardiff, CF10 3EU (

Share this story